11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best ArchivesS

The J. Paul Getty Museum is home to troves of fascinating historical artifacts. And last week, the museum announced a project to give the public unfettered access to it. The Open Content Program makes 4,600 high-resolution images available for free and for any use whatsoever. Here are 11 gems to help begin your historical journey.


Carleton Watkins, Cathedral Rock - Yosemite, 1861, Albumen silver print.

Carleton Watkins took a whole mess of beautiful pictures of Yosemite and the American West before Ansel Adams was even born!

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best ArchivesS


William Henry Jackson, Dale Creek Bridge, Union Pacific Railway, 1885, Albumen silver print.

This... reminds me of an old-timey hyperloop.

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best ArchivesS


Roger Fenton, Dinornis Elephantopus, 1854 - 1858, Salted paper print.

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best Archives


Louis-Émile Durandelle, Exposition universelle de 1889 / État d'avancement, 1888, Albumen silver print.

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best Archives


Anna Atkins and Anne Dixon, Leucojam Varium, 1854, Cyanotype.

A great example of a photogram (placing an object directly on photo-sensitive paper), by one of the first female photographers, Anna Atkins.

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best Archives


Unknown (photographer) , Moon Crater, late 1850s, Salted paper print from a Collodion negative.

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best ArchivesS


A.J. Russell, Commodore Dead, American, April 1864, Albumen silver print.

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best ArchivesS


Eadweard J. Muybridge, Running (Galloping), 1878 - 1879.

Muybridge is often credited with ushering in the age of the motion picture. His high-speed sequential photographs predated the first movie cameras and projectors later in the 19th century.

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best ArchivesS


Unknown (illuminator) , Two Diagrams Showing the Orbits of the Sun and the Moon, Franco-Flemish, fourth quarter of 13th century (after 1277).

It's amazing to see those old geocentric theories actually put down on paper in a visual way!

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best Archives


Doris Ulmann, Darkroom Still Life, 1918, Platinum print.

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best Archives


Walker Evans, Couple at Coney Island, 1928.

11 Amazing Historical Snapshots From One of the World's Best Archives


Check out the complete database of the Getty Open Content Program with over 4,600 photographs, paintings, drawings, other images to download for free. Drop your finds in the comments, below! [Getty Open Content]